1 cup cooked red quinoa, cooled
5-6 large mushrooms (we used a mixture of baby bella and button mushrooms), diced
About 1 teaspoon+ of coconut oil or olive oil
1 cup baby spinach, finely chopped
1/2 medium sized yellow onion, diced
1 large carrot, shredded on box grater
1/2 cup walnuts, finely processed (will resemble texture of breadcrumb) *** if your child is allergic to nuts a good substitute would be Panko breadcrumb or other type of breadcrumb (if using breadcrumb, reduce amount to 1/4 cup)
2 eggs (one for the quinoa mixture, one for egg wash)
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon fresh thyme, minced
1 tablespoon fresh parsley, minced
1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
Sea salt & pepper to taste
Cook quinoa according to package and set aside to cool.
In a pan, add about 1/2 teaspoon of coconut oil (or olive oil) over medium heat. Add mushrooms and saute for about 3 minutes. Add onion and saute for another 2-3 minutes. Add chopped spinach and cook for about 1 minute. Remove from heat and add in shredded carrots and garlic. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Let cool.
In a large bowl, mix cooled quinoa and cooled veggie mixture. Add walnuts (or breadcrumbs), oregano, parsley and thyme. Add 1 egg. Combine all ingredients and shape into even-sized balls. Place on a foil lined baking sheet, lightly sprayed with olive oil.
Make an egg wash using the remaining egg and a drop or two of water. Using a basting brush, lightly coat each “meat”ball with the egg wash.
Bake at 400 degrees for about 10 minutes or until they are lightly browned and slightly crispy.
Serve with tomato sauce – we love a great homemade sauce but homemade sauce isn’t always realistic during a busy week – a good store bought alternative is Brad’s Organic Tomato Sauces (we think the low sodium Garden Veggie one is pretty delicious!!!)
Why we love quinoa:
*** Relative of leafy greens, like spinach and swiss chard
*** gluten free
*** high in protein
*** very versatile – quinoa can take on a number of different flavors. It can be eaten hot or cold. It is great for breakfast (fruits, nuts, maple syrup) / lunch (veggies, herbs, olive oil) or dinner / sweet or savory / add to soups, stews, quinoa mac & cheese, fruity quinoa bowl, colorful veggie quinoa salad, etc.
*** make a batch in the beginning of week and have on hand for simple, quick meals – introduce it to kids add a little at a time by adding a tablespoon or two to pasta dish, rice, soups, yogurt, etc.
*** complete protein – fiber, iron, potassium, calcium
*** Rinse your quinoa before cooking it!!! It eliminates the bitter coating called Saponin
This recipe can also be made with golden quinoa.
Let us know what you think of this recipe!!!!
Happy & healthy eating!